Some AIF men had a rendezvous with death in the ‘silence in the summer night’, but many were to survive only to face ‘the thudding of the guns’, again and again until 11 November 1918 at 11am. Their stories were about ordinary people facing extraordinary circumstances. They endured physical and psychological horrors.
This volume by historian John Ramsland is packed with unusual stories of a deeply personal nature: gripping, frequently harrowing and sometimes chilling. They are bought vividly to life from when the first shot was fired until the last bullet and, then, beyond to the aftermath. Such studies are first-hand, meticulously researched and comprehensively analysed.
From the life stories of historical figures, known or unknown, celebrated or forgotten, the author elegantly crafts an anthology of epic heroism in WWI. In it, he chronicles the harsh reality of it all; he creates a strong picture of living conditions for frontline soldiers in the South Pacific, Gallipoli, the Western Front and Palestine.
John Ramsland is Emeritus Professor at The University of Newcastle and the author of several books and many articles on Australian social history. His most recent books include With just and Relentless discipline : A Social History of Corrective Services in New South Wales (1996) and Custodians of the Soil :A History of Aboriginal-European Relationships in the Manning Valey of New South Wales (2001). He has also published widely on the history of neglected and instituionalised children in England, France, and Australia.
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